IULCOME is an annual initiative of ISCTE - University Institute of Lisbon for the integration of new students in the University. This event is characterised by its size, the involvement of all courses and also the partnership of several external entities.

Given its potential but also due to its enormous logistical complexity, we have been contacted since the third edition to develop a multiplatform solution that integrates a large set of modules for direct interaction with participants and members of the organization. Over 3 editions we had the opportunity to further develop the solution, following the growth of the event.

Without going into too much detail, we would like to talk a little about the initiative and how the developments contribute to it.

Challenge.

This ISCTE initiative invites participants to develop a solution to concrete problems of society with the themes of (i) Planet and (ii) People. To achieve this, the participants were grouped in teams of 4 or 5 people and accompanied by a student from the institution (mentor).
Participants
Mentor

In previous editions of the event, the teams were found to be very irregular in number of participants, since before the event it was impossible to know exactly which students would participate. The main challenge is thus:

How to guarantee complete teams with participants from different courses, using only real-time information?

It was with this need in mind that the first version of the solution was created, capable of filling the teams as the participants arrived and allocating new mentors wherever necessary. All teams would be complete, even guaranteeing that all participants were from different courses and that none were left out.

Over the next two editions of the event, new features were added to facilitate the event’s logistics, save resources and motivate the participation of new students (for example, introducing the gamification app). The information presented below corresponds to the final product used in the third edition of the event, in 2018.

Features.

Team management

Integration with the institution's student management platform and creation of teams at check-in.

Attendance control

Daily check-in by reading student cards (for participants and staff).

Digital lunch tickets

Booking lunch through a student ID. Independent count of lunches per lunch spot.

Gamification

Mobile app for participants. Scores based on attendance and responses to challenges.

Challenge Management

Forms to be filled in by the jury. Automatic calculation of qualifiers for the final and winners.

Multiplatform solution.

Management backoffice

From the backoffice, it is possible to manage all participants in the event, teams, trips to the volunteer site, responses to forms, sessions, peddy paper posts, etc.
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Gamification App

Through the app, participants have all the information related to the event in one place: points, team, mentor, volunteer site, campus map, etc.

The app is also used to validate attendance and answer questionnaires to earn points.

Booking lunches

Application dedicated to reading the cards of the participants and mentors for marking the lunch password
app_almocos_s10

Validation of lunch tickets

Page dedicated to the lunch stations validating the lunches sold each day.

Call for mentors

Separate application for projecting mentors recently allocated to teams, with indication of the respective theme and meeting place with the newly created team.

Real-time scores

Module for the presentation of scores in real time integrated into the institution’s signage system, being presented alongside the usual news and content.

Tech solution.

To support the required features, several modules were developed, each using the appropriate technology, with a focus on the most modern development technologies.

ReactJS, for example, allowed the rapid development of a mobile application that does not require installation for use, and can be accessed directly through the device’s browser.

The lumen framework allowed the fast and organized development of the application backend and some of the modules. It already facilitates the safe interaction with the database and the control of access to endpoints, among others, by default.

Solution impact.

This project was a great challenge and we took great pleasure from participating. The various editions in which we were invited to collaborate gave us the opportunity to grow the solution, developing it more and more through the feedback received and the new needs of each edition.

We would like to thank the institution that invited us and its services, with whom we had the opportunity to interact during the various editions of the event. They gave us freedom and challenged us to do something that we had never done before. All interactions were of
immeasurable quality, with a comfortable environment always conducive to the creativity of all parties.

We look forward to the opportunity to implement such a solution in another event, which will certainly present other challenges.

AppX revealed creativity and a greater capacity for adaptation and problem solving.

Vanda Simões

Education management services at ISCTE-IUL

AppX’s availability and professionalism were priceless in the construction and monitoring of the IULCOME 2018 project. The activity proposed a complex management of people – from check-in, to the on-site assignment teams; a complex management of activities – all of them gamified and in specific spaces; and a complex management of scores – resulting from the individual and team performance in each activity, and the one specifically attributed, in a final session, by the public and the jury. To the initial challenge, and to the obstacles encountered before and during the activity, AppX revealed creativity and a greater capacity for adaptation and problem solving.

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